July 27th, 2021

TECH REVIEW: Kestrel 5700 Elite with Applied Ballistics Software

Kestrel Wind Meter F-Class John Applied Ballistics

The 2021 NRA F-Class National Championships are underway right now at Camp Atterbury, Indiana. The Mid-Range Nationals concluded yesterday with the Team Match, and the Long-Range F-Class Nationals commence today, July 27, 2021 and run through Friday, July 30th. For F-Class competitors, making the right wind call is a vital skill. Many shooters and team wind coaches will be using Kestrel Wind Meters, widely regarded as the best on the market.

Camp Atterbury F-Class Championships

This article reviews the advanced Kestrel 5700 Elite Wind Meter with sophisticated ballistics capabilities. Our review features three videos by F-Class John that show how the Kestrel 5700 Elite works with Applied Ballistics APP software and LiNK connection.

Kestrel Wind Meter F-Class John Applied Ballistics

This Part I Video starts with a basic Kestrel Anemometer (blue case, 00:00-00:40) wind meter. Then reviewer F-Class John looks at the “smart” Kestrel 5700 Elite with Applied Ballistics functionality and LiNK Bluetooth connectivity. John explains the many features of the Kestrel 5700 and how it holds a powerful ballistics calculator in the convenient, easy-to-tote Kestrel package. With the Kestrel 5700 Elite, once you enter data about your bullets, velocity, zero, and rifle, the Kestrel can calculate come-ups and wind corrections. If you don’t yet own a Kestrel, we highly recommend you watch this series of videos that explains advanced Kestrel features in detail.

This Part II Video shows the key features of the advanced software APP used by the Kestrel 5700 Elite unit with Applied Ballistics. The Kestrel 5700 can “talk” to a mobile device that runs the Applied Ballistics software APP that contains bullet databases and allows you to enter key information such as muzzle velocity, bullet BC, zero distance, velocity, wind, and environmental factors (altitude, temperature etc.). There are also gun-specific factors such as scope height over bore and barrel twist rate. The video also explains how “range cards” are created and how to view them with your Elite Ballistics-enabled Kestrel. John notes: “The APP is great because you don’t have to fiddle with the Kestrel’s buttons. It’s much easier to enter data and change settings with the APP.”

This Part III video shows how to determine true wind direction by aligning the SIDE of the unit into the wind. You essentially want to set the unit 90 degrees to the wind direction so the impeller runs as slowly as possible. Then, after you set your target distance (See 3:03), the unit can give you precise come-ups for your intended target (10.28 MOA for 559 yards here). The Kestrel then calculates the cross-wind correction as well (See 3:12).

DISCLAIMER: This video and description contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, the video author may receive a small commission. This helps support F-Class John’s YouTube channel and allows him to continue to make videos like this.

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July 27th, 2021

Reloading Manuals — Good Choices for Handloaders

reloading hand-loading reload data manual sierra berger hornady lyman

It’s great to be able to access online load data for your cartridges. You can quickly get load data for a particular powder and bullet weight. However, there are times when we prefer to consult old-fashioned printed/bound load manuals. The primary reason is that manuals produced by bullet- and tool-makers will, for a particular cartridge, include data for powders from multiple manufacturers. Having a single source can save you time and trouble. For example, if you want to find 6.5 Creedmoor loads using H4350 (Hodgdon), Reloder 16 (Alliant), and N150 (Vihtavuori) you would have to visit three different powder-maker websites, one after another. OR you can pick up a modern load manual and find everything in one place.

There are many excellent printed load manuals on the market. We have used the Berger Manual, Sierra Manual, Speer Manual, Lyman Manual, and Hornady Manual. We like the Berger and Sierra manuals for match rifle cartridges, and the Lyman and Hornady manuals for hunting loads and pistol cartridges. Unfortunately, the popular binder-format Sierra Manual is currently back-ordered. Get one if you can.

The Lyman Reloading Manuals have earn praise over the years:
“Every other reloading book I’ve used favors their own bullets over every other manufacturers. With Lyman you get an honest representation of a wide variety of different… manufacturers. [Lyman has] a ton of reloading data on just about any bullet style you can imagine. I’ve tried a wide range of their recipes and everyone I’ve tried has been spot on. The overall breadth of information this book covers is impressive.” Review by RangetoReal.com.

reloading hand-loading reload data manual Nosler 9 guide sierra berger hornady lymanNosler #9 Manual Features New Cartridges
If you are looking for up-to-date cartridge/bullet/powder information, in late 2020 Nosler released the Nosler Reloading Guide #9, the latest in a respected series of Nosler load manuals.

This 800-page guide covers 101 cartridge types. New in this edition you’ll find the popular 6mm Creedmoor, 6mm XC, 6.5 PRC, and 7.62×39, along with 20 Nosler, 22 Nosler, 24 Nosler, 27 Nosler and 33 Nosler. This manual is a good resource for PRS shooters and hunters. The Nosler #9 book draws from thousands of hours in the Nosler Ballistic Lab, along with the experience of many respected experts.

The book is available for $24.99 at Midsouth or $24.95 on Amazon. Keep in mind that much of the book’s latest load data is available for free on the Nosler.com online LOAD DATA Center. But to get ALL the data, PLUS all the technical articles, you’ll need to buy the book.

Along with the new Nosler #9 Manual, here are four other recommended Reloading Manuals:

Here Are Four General Instructional Books That Cover Reloading Procedures:

POWDER BURN RATE TABLE

Here is the most recent powder burn rate chart from Hodgdon/IMR that we could find. Click links below to access printable PDF. Note, some readers have suggested a couple powder ranking issues in the table. However, this is the latest official version from the IMR website, released in November 2019.


POWDER BURN RATE TABLE from HODGDON.COM

Hodgdon IMR Winchester Burn Rate Powder speed table relative table chart

CLICK HERE to Download Chart as PDF File »

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July 27th, 2021

Polish Inside of Seating Stems to Avoid Ring Marks on Bullets

Seating Stem Reloading Tip Sierra Bullet .223 Remington compressed loads

Here’s a helpful hint for hand-loaders from Sierra Bullets. While this article focuses on Sierra’s new Tipped Match-King bullets, the recommended solutions apply to other bullet types as well. The article explains how sharp edges on a seating stem can cause a ring to be pressed into the bullet jacket — especially with compressed loads that resist downward bullet movement. Here Sierra technician Rich Machholz diagnoses the problem and provides a solution.

Seating Stem Reloading Tip Sierra Bullet .223 Remington compressed loads

Solutions for Ring Marks Caused by Seating Stems

by Sierra Bullets Ballistic Technician Rich Machholz
Now that the new Tipped MatchKing® (TMK) bullets are being shipped and shooters are putting them to use I have received several calls regarding marking on the bullet ogive from the seating stem.

The cause can be traced to one of several things. In the .223 and especially with the long, 77 grain TMK seated at 2.250” or even 2.260” most loads of Varget® and Reloder® 15 are compressed loads, sometimes heavily compressed. This puts a great deal of pressure on the bullet through the seating stem. The result of all this pressure is a mark of varying depth and appearance on the ogive of the bullet. [Editor: We have seen this issue with a variety of other bullet types/shapes as well, including non-tipped VLDs. The solution is profiling the internal cone of the seating stem to match your bullet shape.]

Some older seating stems might even bear against the tip of the bullet which can make a slight bulge in the jacket just below the junction of the resin tip and the copper jacket in a compressed load. If this is the case there is not a ready fix other than calling the die manufacturer and requesting a new deeper seating stem.

Polish Your Seating Stem to Remove Sharp Internal Edges
If the seating stem is of proper depth the culprit most generally is a thin sharp edge on the inside taper of the seating stem. This is an easy fix that can be accomplished by chucking a spare 77 grain bullet in your drill, coating it with valve grinding compound or even rubbing compound or in a pinch even tooth paste.* Remove the seating stem assembly from the seating die. Turn the drill on and put the seating stem recess over the spinning bullet with the polishing compound to break or smooth the sharp edge that is making the offending mark. This might take more than one application to get the proper polish depending upon what you use, but the more you polish the better the blend of angles which will [ensure the stem matches the bullet contours, not leaving a sharp ring].

If the above is a little more than you care to tackle you might try very fine emery cloth twisted to a point that can be inserted into the mouth to the seating stem and rotated to polish the inside to eliminate any sharp edges that might be present.

Load Advice for 77gr TMKs in the .223 Rem
And last but certainly not least. Actually, even though we don’t say you need additional data for the TMKs, remember you are dealing with heavily-compressed loads in some cases because of the additional bullet length. Due to the additional length of these new bullets and in the interest of gaining some room in the case you might consider trying a slightly faster extruded powder like BenchMark or the 4895s or an even more dense powder like the spherical H335®, CFE223 or TAC. The extra room will allow for trouble free bullet seating also.

Good luck and remember we are no further away than your telephone: 1-800-223-8799.

Sierra Bullets Match-King Reloading Bullet Seating

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Tech Tip 5 Comments »
July 26th, 2021

Bargain Finder 305: AccurateShooter’s Deals of the Week

AccurateShooter Deals of the Week Weekly Bargain Finder Sale Discount Savings

At the request of our readers, we provide select “Deals of the Week”. Every Sunday afternoon or Monday morning we offer our Best Bargain selections. Here are some of the best deals on firearms, hardware, reloading components, optics, and shooting accessories. Be aware that sale prices are subject to change, and once clearance inventory is sold, it’s gone for good. You snooze you lose.

1. Midsouth — Birthday Sale on Rifle Kits, Ammo, Bullets, Mags

Midsouth Shooters AR Kit hornady bullets brass magazines
Big Savings on AR Kits, Hornady Bullets, Pistol Load Packs

Right now Midsouth Shooters is celebrating its 52nd year in business with a big Birthday Sale. Save $70 on a full AR kit — everything you need but the Lower. Or get a great 9mm Reloaders Pack with 1000 115gr Bullets and 500 pieces of new, unprimed brass. Midsouth also has a wide selection of Hornady Bullets on sale in 500-ct “sleeves”. There are both pistol (9mm, .38, .45) and rifle bullets (.224, .308) at huge savings. You’ll also find 9mm Luger and 5.56×45 (.223 Rem) loaded ammo on sale. Last but not least you can get ten (10) 30rd AR magazines for just $99.00.

2. Sportsman’s Warehouse — Winchester .22 LR Wildcat, $219.99

sportsmans warehouse winchester wildcat rimfire .22 LR 22LR rifle sale
Removable lower receiver, Picatinny rails, good trigger, great price

Here is a fun little semi-auto .22 LR rifle at a crazy low price — $219.99 at Sportsman’s Warehouse. The Winchester Wildcat takes Ruger 10/22 mags, and has some great features, such as field-removable lower receiver, ambidextrous controls, integral Picatinny rails and rear barrel access. It has a good trigger and shoots well. In many respects the Wildcat beats the Ruger 10/22 while costing considerably less. The lower receiver assembly is easily removed from the upper assembly by pushing a button — no tools required.

3. Midsouth — Lyman Gen6 Powder Scale/Dispenser, $218.99

Free Shipping Lyman Powder Scale Dispenser ChargeMaster Natchez Gen6 deals of week AccurateShooter
Reliable — nice shielded design with side port, good value

Like the RCBS ChargeMaster, this Lyman Gen6 Powder System will automatically dispense and weigh powder charges. This unit features a touch screen, rapid warm-up, anti-static/anti-drift technology, and electronic shielding to resist interference from other electronic devices. One notable feature is a side port to quick-drain the powder. Right now this Lyman Gen6 Scale/Dispenser is on sale at Midsouth for $218.99. That’s a very good deal as this same Lyman unit sells for $293.99 elsewhere.

4. Grafs.com — Leupold SX4 Spotting Scopes, $699.99 or $899.99

leupold sx-44 spotting scopes sale straight angled $100 off Graf's
Save $100 on Angled or Straight spotters, 65mm or 85mm objection

Graf & Sons is running a sale on Leupold SX4 Pro Guide Spotting Scopes. Choose straight or angled, either big 85mm front objective or the smaller 65mm. Save $100 on any and all SX4 models. We prefer the smaller version for hunting/varminting, and the bigger 85mm for competition spotting duties. This is a high-quality optic with an outstanding warranty. If you shoot prone, you’ll want the angled version.

5. Midsouth — Lyman Tac-Mat Shooting Mat, $56.63

lyman tac-mat padded long range shooting mat
Thick padded mat offers more comfort with good length and carry handle

Comfort counts when you’re on the ground for hours. We like this Lyman Tac-Mat 71″ x 36″ shooting mat. It has more padding than most mats on the market, providing better comfort. Now $56.63 at Midsouth, this is a VERY good deal. This same Lyman shooting mat is $89.89 on Amazon.

6. Amazon — Frankford Case Tumbler Master Kit, $73.99

frankford arsenal tumbler
We’ve used this Combo Kit for many seasons — very good value right now

Keeping your brass clean is one of the best ways to keep your dies (and reloading presses) clean as well. If you’re looking for a new, affordable setup to clean cartridge brass, consider the Frankford Arsenal Quick-N-EZ Case Tumbler Master Kit. You get everything needed to dry-tumble your brass and remove the media. This is all available now for a very low $73.99. You could pay that much for a good vibratory tumbler alone.

7. LAXAmmo — TulAmmo 9mm Ammo 1000 rounds, $319.89

tulammo pistol 9mm luger ammo sale Midsouth
Great deal on 9mm Luger ammo — $16 per 50rd box

This TulAmmo 9mm ammo will work for pistol practice. The big appeal of this Russian-made steel-cased ammo in PRICE. Get 1000 rounds for $319.89 — that works out to $16 per 50rd box ($0.32/round), a third of the price some vendors are asking for 9mm Luger ammo. You can also purchase 500 rounds for $169.95. NOTE: This ammo is non-corrosive. However it has STEEL cases so it is NOT reloadable.

8. Amazon — Bluetooth Digital Anemometer, $25.99

wind meter sale
Measures wind velocity with Bluetooth connection to Smartphone App

To shoot successfully at long range, you need precise wind speed readings. This “smart” Digital Anemometer (windmeter) records Max/Min/Average wind speeds and ambient temperature which display on-screen. Importantly, the unit also outputs wind readings to your smartphone via Bluetooth. This allows you to mount the wind meter downrange and view wind speeds via a smartphone App. The unit’s base is threaded for tripod mounting. This is a pretty impressive system for under thirty bucks.

9. Amazon — EILIKS Multi-Tool Kit, $32.99

Amazon camping emergency tool kit 24-piece EILIKS knife flashlight cord, blanket
Very versatile kit for vehicle and camping

The 24-piece EILIKS Multi-Tool Kit it a great item for your vehicle. This contains a nice survival knife and flashlight, plus 22 other emergency survival tools: paracord bracelets, wire saw, water bottle clip, emergency blanket, flint stone, scraper, blow fire tube, 4pcs fire tinder, whistle, saber card, survival pen, multi-use spoon fork, 2 carabiners, 4pces ishing tools and box. The full 8″x4″x2″ kit will fit in most vehicle glove compartments, and can be attached to belt or pack with included ranger band. List price was $48.99, so the $32.99 price is 33% Off.

10. Midsouth — Radians Outback Shooting Glasses, $5.88

radians outback shooting safety eyewear glasses
Quality name-brand shooting eyewear — buy multiples at this price

Every shooter needs eye protection EVERY TIME you go to the shooting range. Right now Midsouth has the good Radians clear Lens Outback Shooting Glasses for just $5.88. These ANSI Z87.1 Radians Shooting Glasses provide 99.9% UVA/UVB protection with the coated lenses. These offer excellent wrap-around protection and are fairly light and comfortable. A handy neck cord is included. With this low $5.88 price, you can buy 3 or 4 sets and keep spares in your vehicles, so you always have protective eyewear for yourself and your friends.

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July 26th, 2021

How to Range Targets with MIL-Reticle Optics

NRA Video Milrad MIL mil-dot range reticle

MIL-system scopes are popular with tactical shooters. One advantage of MIL scopes is that the mil-dot divisions in the reticle can be used to estimate range to a target. If you know the actual size of a target, you can calculate the distance to the target relatively easily with a mil-based ranging reticle. Watch this helpful NRA video to see how this is done:

Milliradian Definition and Yardage Ranging Formula
“MIL” or “Milrad” is short-hand for Milliradian, a unit of angular measurement. The subtension of 1 mil equals 3.6 inches at 100 yards or 36 inches at 1,000 yards. (In metric units, 1 mil equals 10 centimeters at 100 meters or 1 meter at 1,000 meters.) Knowing this subtension and knowing the size of the target (or a reference object near the target) allows the distance to the target to be estimated with considerable accuracy. The formula used to calculate range (in yards) based on MIL measurement is:

Height of Target in inches (divided by 36) x 1000, divided by the number of mils.

NRA Video Milrad MIL mil-dot range reticle

For example, if a 14″ tall target spans 3 mils from top to bottom, the distance is 129.67 yards calculated as follows: 14/36 x 1000 = 389, then divided by 3 = 129.67. You can also use a different conversion to find distance in meters.

Can You Estimate Range with an MOA-Marked Reticle? Yes You Can…
Reader Josh offers this handy advice: “It worth noting that the ability to measure range is not unique to mil-based systems. A MIL is just another unit for measuring angles, and any angular measurement will work. Considering that just about everybody knows that 1 MOA is about an inch per hundred yards, similar formulae can be developed for ranging with MOA marks. The advantage with mils is the precise relationship between units — the MOA-inch measurement is imprecise (being off by 0.047″) — so in principle MILs are a better unit”.

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July 26th, 2021

PRS/NRL How-To: Practical Shooter’s Guide by Marcus Blanchard

Marcus Blanchard Practical Shooter's Guide

Thinking of getting started in the Practical/Tactical shooting game? Looking for ways to be more stable when shooting from unconventional positions? Then you may want to read Marcus Blanchard’s Practical Shooter’s Guide (A How-To Approach for Unconventional Firing Positions and Training). Unlike almost every “how to shoot” book on the market, Blanchard’s work focuses on the shooting skills and positions you need to succeed in PRS matches and similar tactical competitions.

Blanchard provides clear advice on shooting from barricades, from roof-tops, from steep angles. Blanchard says you need to train for these types of challenges: “I believe the largest factor in the improvement of the average shooter isn’t necessarily the gear; it’s the way the shooter approaches obstacles and how they properly train for them.”

Marcus Blanchard Practical Shooter's Guide

Blanchard also offers good tips on shooting fundamentals. Here’s an example:

Blanchard on Trigger Control
“There will always be some amount of wobble when shooting in positions other than prone, and timing the shot to go off when the reticle is within the target is difficult to accomplish when poor trigger techniques are employed. The most common [mistake] I have seen is ‘slapping’ the trigger. The finger is usually hovering off the trigger, and when the shooter determines that NOW is the time to fire, they quickly pull their finger to the rear and ‘slap’ the trigger. The finger never pulls the trigger in the same place and often provokes a sympathetic contraction of the rest of the muscles in the hand, which results in unwanted movement before the bullet exits the muzzle.”

Author Marcus Blanchard has the credentials. A Marine Corps veteran, Blanchard is a regular Top 10 finisher in Precision Rifle Series events. In 2015 Blanchard was ranked 8th overall (nationwide) in the PRS series at year’s end. In 2016 Blanchard won the New Mexico Precision Rifleman’s Championship.

Check out the Table of Contents to see the Topics Covered:

Practical Shooter's Guide Tactical training book
Click image above to view larger Table of Contents.

6.5 Guys Recommend Practical Shooter’s Guide
The 6.5 Guys have reviewed Blanchard’s book and they recommend it highly: “What’s a good book for the beginning shooter who wants to get into long range precision rifle or the intermediate shooter who wants to improve his scores? [The Practical Shooter’s Guide] is particularly useful because it explores firing from various positions and props that are encountered in long range precision rifle [events]. This knowledge is completely missing from more traditional books where the shooter is usually slung up and shooting at a paper target. Marcus… goes into considerable detail about shooting from rooftops, reverse rooftops, side slopes, tank traps, barricades etc. This is the type of information that is very difficult to find. We consider ourselves reasonably knowledgeable shooters and this book provided us with new and useful information.” CLICK HERE for 6.5 Guys REVIEW.

6.5 Guys Review Marcus Blanchard’s Practical Shooter’s Guide

Frank Galli rifle marksmanship PRS NRL precision rifle training book print resource manual gun handling instructionPrecision Rifle Marksmanship
Another excellent book for PRS/NRL shooting is Precision Rifle Marksmanship: The Fundamentals by Frank Galli, founder of SnipersHide.com.

Former USMC scout-sniper Frank Galli explains that there is no voodoo when it comes to precision rifle marksmanship, but there ARE techniques that, when practiced, make the difference between good marksmanship and great marksmanship. Understanding the reasons that a bullet hits or doesn’t hit its intended target at ultra-long distances is a crucial element to learning.

Galli’s explanations of how to understand and compensate for wind speed and direction are excellent. In this book, Galli offers great wind-reading advice.

Published in 2020, Galli’s treatise is four years newer than Blanchard’s book, so it includes more of the latest gear and equipment. Galli’s book covers the fundamentals of precision marksmanship with easy-to-understand methodology. The book follow the same instruction process Galli uses in his live marksmanship classes (CLASS REPORT HERE).

Published in 2020, this well-illustrated, 272-page book covers the latest equipment (scopes, LRFs, chassis systems, magazines, bags, bipods, tripods) favored by tactical competitors in PRS/NRL type matches.

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July 25th, 2021

Sunday GunDay: Will Shaner Wins Air Rifle Olympic Gold Medal

William Shaner 10m Air Rifle NBC 2021 Tokyo Olympics Gold Medal shooting

20-Year-Old William Shaner just won the USA’s second Gold Medal at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. The University of Kentucky marksman captured Gold in the 10-meter (10m) Air Rifle, setting an Olympic record in the process. Shaner scored 251.6 points in the 10m final to set a new Olympic Record that’s just 1.2 points shy of the world record. Will scored 10.5 or above on 13 of his 24 shots in the final. At the Tokyo Games, William was shooting a Walther Air Rifle.

William hails from Colorado Springs, Colorado. He started his shooting career at age nine in a 4H program in the appropriately named town of Rifle, Colorado.

Watch Will Shaner capture Gold with a stellar shooting performance, broadcast by NBC Sports:

William Shaner 10m Air Rifle NBC Yahoo News 2021 Tokyo Olympics Gold Medal shooting
CLICK HERE for Yahoo News Video about William Shaner Gold Medal in 10M Air Rifle.

Young Will Shaner Was Calm After Record-Setting Victory
USA Today reported: “Will Shaner reacted like someone who could not wrap his head around the idea he’d won a Gold Medal. There were no yells, no fist pumps, no jumping, as Shaner captured U.S. Shooting’s first-ever Gold Medal in the men’s 10 meter air rifle. Hardly a wave, even. If he was smiling, you couldn’t tell, as a massive Nike Team USA mask covered almost his entire face.

“Still trying to believe it”, he said afterward. “It’s been a long time, though, growing up in the sport, progressing. To finally have (the gold medal), it’s amazing.”

“Yesterday, [was] a little bit of a slow start for everyone,” he said, as Team USA went without a medal on the first day of competition for the first time in nearly 50 years. “Today, to (help) finally get it moving, it’s amazing. It’s really an honor.”

Will Shaner Becomes Social Media Star After Winning Gold Medal

Team USA Tweeted news of Shaner’s Gold Medal-winning performance to fans around the world. Because Will set a new Olympic Record, one respondent called him the “GOAT” (greatest of all time). Well, that may be hyperbole, but Shaner did achieve the greatest 10m Air Rifle final score in Olympics history.

William Shaner 10m Air Rifle NBC 2021 Tokyo Olympics Gold Medal shooting

William Shaner 10m Air Rifle NBC 2021 Tokyo Olympics Gold Medal shooting

William Shaner 10m Air Rifle NBC 2021 Tokyo Olympics Gold Medal shooting20-year-old Will Shaner earned the second Gold Medal of the Tokyo Olympics for the United States. Will, who hails from Colorado Springs, CO, won the men’s 10-meter air rifle on Sunday with a final round score of 251.6 at the Asaka Shooting Range, edging out China’s Sheng Lihao, 16, by 0.7. China’s Yang Haoran took the bronze medal, finishing just 0.4 behind Sheng.

— Shaner set a new Olympic record with a score of 251.6

— The 20-year-old is a mechanical engineering student at the University of Kentucky

— The silver medal winner, Sheng Lihao of China, is only 16 years old

— Shaner’s victory was the first Gold Medal ever won in this 10m event by the United States

— Shaner first started his marksmanship training at Age 9 at a 4H Program in Rifle, Colorado

Watch Shaner Win Gold and stand on podium on NBC4 New York:
William Shaner 10m Air Rifle NBC 2021 Tokyo Olympics Gold Medal shooting
CLICK PHOTO to watch video on NBC 4 New York.

Will Shaner — From Colorado, to Kentucky, to Olympic Glory

William is one of two University of Kentucky (UK) Rifle athletes competing in the Tokyo Olympics. As one of the nation’s top prospects coming into college, he was named NCAA Rookie of the Year his freshman year and was an All-American First Team member in air rifle and smallbore. William finished second in the NCAA Air Rifle individual championship in addition to winning the team gold with Kentucky his sophomore year. He repeated this exact feat with again with UK his junior year.

Will has done well in international competition. Shooting Sports USA noted: “Foreshadowing his Olympic performance … earlier this year Shaner won a gold medal at the ISSF World Cup Croatia.”

William Shaner 10m Air Rifle NBC 2021 Tokyo Olympics Gold Medal shooting

William started in shooting sports when he was 9 years old at a small 4-H program in Rifle, Colorado. From there, he moved on to shooting monthly preliminary tryout (PTO) events at the Olympic and Paralympic Training Center until he could start qualifying for major matches. He won his first Junior Olympic Gold Medal at age 11 in 50m prone and made the Junior National Team at age 14 which propelled him into the international circuit. Fast forward less than a decade and William is, according to known USAS records, the youngest U.S. Men’s Olympic Rifle Qualifier.

William Shaner also shoots Smallbore Rifle (.22 LR) for the University of Kentucky:
William Shaner 10m Air Rifle NBC 2021 Tokyo Olympics Gold Medal shooting
CLICK PHOTO to view full-screen image of Shaner with Bleiker .22 LR Rifle.

Driven by the pursuit of perfection and appreciation for his small-town roots, Will strives to be a role model for the next generation of shooting athletes. He credits his successes to coaches and support from the National Training Center Shooting Club (NTCSC), USA Shooting, and the University of Kentucky.

Team USA Rifle Shooters at 2021 Tokyo Olympics

USA Shooting has sent 20 Olympians to the Tokyo Olympic Games to represent the United States in the able-bodied shooting sports (there is a separate Paralympic shooting team). Our athletes have earned 8 quotas for the shotgun disciplines, 8 quotas for the rifle disciplines, and 6 quotas for the pistol disciplines (22 total). Here are the 8 Rifle Competitors, the four Air Rifle shooters and four Smallbore shooters:

Team USA William Shaner 10m Air Rifle 2021 Tokyo Olympics Gold Medal shooting

Permalink Competition, Gear Review, News, Shooting Skills 2 Comments »
July 25th, 2021

5 Degrees of Doom — The Real Risk of Unintended Down-Range Impacts from Slightly Elevated Muzzles

Gun Angle long range

In our Shooters’ Forum, there was an discussion about a range that was threatened with closure because rifle over-shoots were hitting a farm building over two miles from the firing line. One reader was skeptical of this, asking “how’s that possible — were these guys aiming at the stars?” Actually, you may be surprised. It doesn’t take much up-angle on a rifle to have a bullet land miles down-range. That’s why it’s so important that hunters and target shooters always orient their barrels in a safe direction (and angle). Shooters may not realize how much a small tilt of the barrel (above horizontal) can alter a bullet’s trajectory.

How many degrees of muzzle elevation do you think it would take to hit a barn at 3000 yards? Ten Degrees? Twenty Degrees? Actually the answer is much less — for a typical hunting cartridge, five to seven degrees of up-angle on the rifle is enough to create a trajectory that will have your bullet impacting at 3000 yards — that’s 1.7 miles away!

Gun Angle long range

Five degrees isn’t much at all. Look at the diagram above. The angle actually displayed for the up-tilted rifle is a true 5.07 degrees (above horizontal). Using JBM Ballistics, we calculated 5.07° as the angle that would produce a 3000-yard impact with a 185gr .30-caliber bullet launched at 2850 fps MV. That would be a moderate “book load” for a .300 Win Mag deer rifle.

Here’s how we derived the angle value. Using Litz-derived BCs for a 185gr Berger Hunting VLD launched at 2850 fps, the drop at 3000 yards is 304.1 MOA (Minutes of Angle), assuming a 100-yard zero. This was calculated using a G7 BC with the JBM Ballistics Program. There are 60 MOA for each 1 degree of Angle. Thus, 304.1 MOA equals 5.068 degrees. So, that means that if you tilt up your muzzle just slightly over five degrees, your 185gr bullet (2850 fps MV) will impact 3000 yards down-range.

Figuring Trajectories with Different Bullets and MVs
If the bullet travels slower, or if you shoot a bullet with a lower BC, the angle elevation required for a 3000-yard impact goes up, but the principle is the same. Let’s say you have a 168gr HPBT MatchKing launched at 2750 fps MV from a .308 Winchester. (That’s a typical tactical load.) With a 100-yard zero, the total drop is 440.1 MOA, or 7.335 degrees. That’s more up-tilt than our example above, but seven degrees is still not that much, when you consider how a rifle might be handled during a negligent discharge.

Think about a hunter getting into position for a prone shot. If careless, he could easily touch off the trigger with a muzzle up-angle of 10 degrees or more. Even when shooting from the bench, there is the possibility of discharging a rifle before the gun is leveled, sending the shot over the berm and, potentially, thousands of yards down-range.

Hopefully this article has shown folks that a very small amount of barrel elevation can make a huge difference in your bullet’s trajectory, and where it eventually lands. Nobody wants to put holes in a distant neighbor’s house, or worse yet, have the shot cause injury.

Let’s go back to our original example of a 185gr bullet with a MV of 2850 fps. According to JBM, this projectile will still be traveling 687 fps at 3000 yards, with 193.7 ft/lbs of retained energy at that distance. That’s more than enough energy to be deadly.

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July 25th, 2021

Save Money This Summer with Brownells Discount Codes

Brownells discount code savings bargain

If you’ve been thinking about a big purchase at Brownells, here are some money-saving codes. Brownells is currently offering $40 Off a $450+ purchase, $20 Off a $250+ purchase, $15 Off a $150+ purchase, and $10 Off a $100+ purchase. It’s simple to get these discounts — there are no buyers’ clubs to join, no forms to fill out. Just use the appropriate Discount Code during online check-out.

Listed below are the Codes to use. Simply use the appropriate Code for your purchase at Brownells.com. As these Codes may be deactivated without notice, if one Code doesn’t work, try a different Code and you can still save some buck$. Also if the highest value code no longer works, try a lesser value CODE.

Brownells discount code savings bargain

Coupon Code: VST — $40 Off $450 or more
Expiration date: Unknown

Coupon Code: VSJ — $20 Off $250 or more
Expiration date: Unknown

Coupon Code: SAE — $15 off $150 or more
Expiration date: Unknown

Coupon Code: TAG — $15 off $150 or more
Expiration date: Unknown

Coupon Code: PTT — $10 Off $100 or more
Expiration date: Unknown

Coupon Code: RSA — $10 Off $100 or more
Expiration date: Unknown

Coupon Code: RTA — $10 Off $100 or more
Expiration date: Unknown

NOTE: All these codes have no listed expiration date, so Brownells could terminate them at any time. Accordingly, we recommend you do your shopping soon.

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July 24th, 2021

National Rimfire Sporter Event This Weekend at Camp Perry

CMP rimfire sporter match Camp Perry 2017 smallbore rifle
The CMP National Rimfire Sporter Match is a fun competition with affordable smallbore rifles with either scopes or iron sights. All you need are a .22 LR rifle, sling, and ammo.

Each year, the Rimfire Sporter Match attracts hundreds of shooters to the shores of Lake Erie. If there is a single CMP event at Camp Perry that offers the most diverse group of competitors (of all ages), and the lowest cost of entry, that would be the annual Rimfire Sporter Match.

This year’s match will be held on Sunday, July 25, 2021 on the Viale Range.* The Rimfire Sporter Match is for .22 LR rimfire rifles weighing 7.5 pounds or less with sights. Firing is done at 25 and 50 yards in prone, sitting, and standing positions, in slow and rapid fire modes. The CMP has a special smart-phone App that speeds up scoring. CLICK HERE for Match Program.

CMP Rimfire Sporter Guidebook | VIEW AccurateShooter’s Rimfire Sporter Page

rimfire sporter match Camp Perry Ohio
Hundreds of shooters will compete in the Rimfire Sporter Match Sunday, July 25, 2021 at Camp Perry. Today, Saturday July 24th, Rimfire Sporter competitors go through the check-in. The rifles will be weighed, triggers checked, and shooters will receive their squad assignment. NOTE: The CMP states that: “Walk-on entries on the day of the match will be accepted if range space is available.”

CMP rimfire sporter match Camp Perry 2017 smallbore rifle
The CMP National Rimfire Sporter Match is a fun competition with affordable smallbore rifles with either scopes or iron sights. All you need are a .22 LR rifle, sling, and ammo.

National Rimfire Sporter Match Camp Perry 2016

rimfire sporter 2021

cmp rimfire sporter camp perry 2019
cmp rimfire sporter camp perry 2019

Three Rimfire Classes — Iron Sights, Scoped, and Tactical Rimfire
Rifles may be manually operated or semi-automatic, in three classes: the standard “O Class” for open-sighted rifles, “T-Class” for telescope-sighted rifles (up to 6 power), and the “Tactical Rimfire” Class. Competitors may elect to fire in one class (single entry), or they may enter the competition in two classes (combined entry). Competitors may use spotting scopes or binoculars to spot shots during shooting Firing is done at 50 and 25 yards on a target with a 1.78″ ten-ring. The target is simple enough for a beginner to hit, yet challenging enough that only one competitor in the history of the match has ever fired a perfect 600 score.

One nice aspect of the Rimfire Sport Match is that “coaching new and inexperienced shooters is permitted, except that coaches scopes must be turned away from the targets during rapid-fire stages.” (See CMP 2021 Rimfire Sporter Match Program)

FREE Ammo from SK (One 50rd Box per Entrant):
SK Ammunition will provide 50 rounds of SK .22 LR smallbore ammunition for each competitor in the National Rimfire Sporter Match, but this ammunition will not be enough to shoot the entire match. Competitors will need a total of 60 rounds to fire the Rimfire Sporter Match plus any sighters or range alibis. CPM Programs Chief, Christie Sewell stated, “The CMP is excited to announce SK as the Official Ammunition Sponsor for our National Rimfire Sporter Match. Participants will receive a complimentary 50-round box of SK ammunition at check-in.”

cmp rimfire sporter camp perry 2019

Rimfire Sporter Course of Fire

Competitors will complete slow fire prone, rapid fire prone, slow fire sitting or kneeling, rapid fire sitting or kneeling, slow fire standing, and rapid fire standing shot sequences.

National Rimfire Sporter Match Camp Perry 2019

National Rimfire Sporter Match Camp Perry 2019

What to Bring to the 2021 Rimfire Sporter Match

Competitors need to bring their own .22 cal. Rimfire rifle(s) and ammunition. Special target shooting equipment, shooting jackets, or shooting gloves are not permitted, but feel free to bring a spotting telescope and ground cloth or shooting mat. You will be shooting on a grass firing point. Competitors are strongly urged to wear hearing and eye protection. Assistance for disabled competitors will be provided.

Rimfire sporter match 2019 Camp Perry


* New this year, in conjunction with the National Rimfire Sporter Match, is a 50/100 Rimfire Sporter Dewar Match on the Rodriguez Range. The Course of Fire will be 20 shots at 50 yards and 20 shots at 100 yards, with 20 minutes per stage. Competitors will shoot at the Rodriguez Smallbore Range on official Smallbore Targets. Scoped Rifles Only — Competitors must have a scoped rifle. Iron sights rifles are excluded from this Dewar Match.

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July 24th, 2021

Savage 110 Elite Precision — $1750 Rig for PRS Production Class

Savage Arms model 110 Elite Precision rifle PRS NRL ELR tactical modular rifle

Looking for a match-worthy PRS/NRL rig for under $1750.00? Check out Savage’s Elite Precision Model 110. GunsAmerica Digest recently did a very thorough test of the 110 Elite Precision, declaring that this modern Savage is “Competition-Ready Out of the Box.” The Savage’s $1750 price is well under the PRS $2500 Production Division limit.*

Is this an outstanding deal at $1750? Absolutely. Consider this, the recently-released Proof Research MDT Chassis Rifle, which shares the SAME MDT ACC Chassis, has a $5699.00 MSRP! For that amount of hard-earned cash, you could buy THREE Savage Elite Precisions AND have $449 left over ($1750 x 3 = $5250)! Put the $3949 saved into optics and reloading gear (or a couple mortgage payments).

The Savage 110 Elite Precision has many notable features:

1. Modular Driven Technologies (MDT) Adjustable Core Competition (ACC) Chassis
2. Trigger adjusts from 1.5-4.0 pounds
3. Barrel comes with timed muzzle brake from factory
4. MDT ACC Chassis easily accepts Weights and Accessories
5. Takes AICS-compatible Magazines
6. Titanium Nitride coated bolt body

This rifle boasts an excellent MDT ACC modular chassis. GunsAmerica stated: “Combined with the excellent trigger, an AR-compatible vertical grip, flared magazine well, and AICS mag system (along with a host of additional features), the 110 Elite Precision comes with everything you need [for PRS/NRL matches].” The stock has ARCA rails on the fore-end and M-LOK mounting points for accessories and/or weights. You can add an additional 9 pounds of steel to customize the balance/mass of the rifle to improve stability and minimize recoil.

Savage Arms model 110 Elite Precision rifle PRS NRL ELR tactical modular rifle
The Cheekpiece and Buttpad are adjustable, along with Length of Pull (LOP).

Another reviewer noted that the 110 Elite Precision has important accurizing tweaks from the factory: “Key upgrades include a blueprinted action … Savage squared the receiver face and cleaned up the receiver threads to ensure they’re concentric with the barrel’s bore. This combination goes a long way in eliminating the occasional flyer that can ruin a good group or cause a miss in a match.” Source: GunsandAmmo.com.

Accuracy with Factory Ammo
What kind of accuracy can you expect? Decent for a factory barrel and factory ammo. With Hornady 6.5 Creedmoor ammo, shooting off a sled, the test rifle delivered 1.1-MOA average groups. We would expect considerably better accuracy using a proper front rest with a bag-rider fitted to the fore-end. Likewise, the gun would almost certainly shoot better with handloads with Lapua brass and Berger bullets. Handling was good: “The Elite Precision is about as shootable as it gets. The 12.6-pound rifle produces very little recoil with the 6.5 Creedmoor cartridge, and … the ACC chassis can be weighted to control recoil even further.” NOTE: We have discussed accuracy with other Savage 110 Elite Precision owners, who have reported considerably better accuracy. But as with most large-maker factory rifles, the accuracy of the barrel is unpredictable. If you want a half-MOA guarantee, you’ll need to spend more (see footnote).

Savage Arms model 110 Elite Precision rifle PRS NRL ELR tactical modular rifle

Actual owners have been impressed with the 110 Elite Precision. One buyer posted: “You couldn’t build a complete PRS rifle that is this good of a platform for even close to the price!” GunsAmerica tester Jordan Michaels concurred that this rig is a great choice for PRS/NRL factory-class: “If you’re in the market for a rifle to compete in a long-range competition, the Savage 110 Elite Precision is an excellent choice.”


* The PRS “Production Class” price limit is now $2500.00 as stated in the 2021 PRS Rulebook (Rule 2.3.1). To qualify as Production Class, the rifle must have that manufacturer’s stamp on the barrel, so you can’t cheat and slip a Krieger or Bartlein on the Savage (Rule 2.3.11). Another under-$2500 alternative is the newly-introduced MasterPiece Arms MPA BA PMR Pro Rifle II (Product Match Rifle) priced at $2499.00. This rifle, which comes with a Half-MOA Accuracy Guarantee, has been approved for use in PRS Production Division. The MPA includes many competition-related features while staying under the $2,500 price limit for this class. It is available in either a Black or Tungsten Cerakote® finish. It uses a MPA/Curtis Short Action with Lothar Walther hand-lapped barrel. MORE INFO.

PRS Production Division MPA BA PMR Pro Rifle II $2500

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July 24th, 2021

USAMU Hosts Rimfire Small Arms Firing School at Camp Perry

CMP USAMU SFC Brandon Green SAFS small arms rimfire firing school camp perry
Junior shooter receives instruction from 3-time National High Power Champion SFC Brandon Green. This kid is a lucky young fellow — you won’t find a more qualified instructor than SFC Green!

The USAMU Service Rifle Team recently arrived at Camp Perry. Today, the day before the big National Rimfire Sporter Match, USAMU team instructors conducted a Small Arms Firing School session for rimfire shooters. This was done in cooperation with the CMP, which will host hundreds of Rimfire Sporter shooters tomorrow July 25, 2021. Today, the CMP conducted the official Rimfire Sporter Check-In. Competitors had their rifles weighed and triggers tested. To ensure that expensive match rifles don’t dominate the competition, all Rimfire Sporter rifles are limited to 7.5 pounds overall weight while the rifles’ triggers must break at 3.0 pounds or higher.

CMP USAMU SFC Brandon Green SAFS small arms rimfire firing school camp perry
CMP USAMU SFC Brandon Green SAFS small arms rimfire firing school camp perry
CMP USAMU SFC Brandon Green SAFS small arms rimfire firing school camp perry

The USAMU posted: “If you think things are a little too quiet around here, hang in there because High Power shooting will begin next week.”

SSG Brandon Green

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July 23rd, 2021

F-Class NRA Championships at Camp Atterbury Are Underway

NRA F-Class 2021 Camp Atterbury

America’s top F-Class shooters are in position with targets in sight right now. The shooting phase of the 2021 NRA F-Class National Championships commenced today, July 23rd, with the first scored relays of the Mid-Range Championship, held at Camp Atterbury in Indiana. The Mid-Range event runs through July 26 with the Mid-Range Team Match. The Long Range F-Class National Championship then commences on July 27th, and runs through July 30, with the Team Match on July 29, 2021.

NRA F-Class 2021 Camp Atterbury

F-Class National Championship event schedule from the NRA National Match Calendar:

NRA F-Class national championship

F-Class National Championships Camp Atterbury Indiana
The 2021 NRA F-Class Nat’l Championships at Camp Atterbury are underway. The Mid-Range F-Class Nationals run July 22-26, 2021, while the Long Range F-Class Nationals take place July 27-30, 2021.

Camp atterbury indiana satellite map

Lodging Options at Camp Atterbury — Summer 2021
Shooting Sports USA (SSUSA) recently released information on the NRA Championships at Camp Perry. The SSUSA article states: “As for lodging, there are several options. The most convenient are on-base, with Camp Atterbury offering hotel-style buildings with suites, along with standard rooms, and ‘open military squad bay’-style quarters available by reservation. Camp Atterbury also offers a limited number of RV spots, plus the MWR campground and cabins. NOTE: Lodging is controlled by the Camp Atterbury Lodging Office, not the NRA.

Click Photo for Large Map of Camp Atterbury, Indiana
NRA national match championships camp atterbury 2021

Smallbore F-Class National Championship

It is not well-known, but the NRA recognizes a .22 LR Rimfire F-Class discipline. And this year Camp Atterbury hosted the F-Class Smallbore Championship. Turnout was fairly meager for this event, with only 17 competitors. But every match needs a start, and we expect smallbore F-Class to become considerably more popular in years to come. The match involved three stages, with targets at 50 yards, 50 meters, and 100 yards. The 2021 Smallbore F-Class Championships, part of the NRA National Matches, were held July 12-16 at Camp Atterbury, near Edinburgh, Indiana.

.22 LR Rimfire F-Class NRA Championship 2021
Cole McCullough photo from SSUSA.org

.22 LR Rimfire F-Class NRA Championship 2021Shane Collier won the 2021 NRA Smallbore F-Class National Championship with a 6363-479X Score, also winning High Civilian honors. William Treder finished second with a score of 6359-473X. Treder was High Senior. The High Women was Barbara C. Hampson with 6287-349X. Since 2019, the Marianne Jensen Driver Memorial Trophy has been awarded to the NRA Smallbore F-Class National Champion.

The Smallbore F-Class Nationals were fired over four days at distances of 50 yards, 50 meters and 100 yards. The event was shot at the new, modern covered ranges at Atterbury, which were also used for the NRA position-shooting smallbore championship.

FULL RESULTS for Smallbore F-Class Nat’l Championship

MORE PHOTOS from All NRA Smallbore Nat’l Championships

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July 23rd, 2021

How to Select and Set Up a Decapping Die

universal Decapping die sinclair lee redding

One of our Forum members complained that he wasn’t able to set his primers flush to the rim. He tried a variety of primer tools, yet no matter what he used, the primers still didn’t seat deep enough. He measured his primers, and they were the right thickness, but it seemed like his primer pockets just weren’t deep enough. He was mystified as to the cause of the problem.

Well, our friend Boyd Allen diagnosed the problem. It was the decapping rod. If the rod is adjusted too low (screwed in too far), the base of the full-diameter rod shaft (just above the pin) will contact the inside of the case. That shaft is steel whereas your case is brass, a softer, weaker metal. So, when you run the case up into the die, the shaft can actually stretch the base of the primer pocket outward. Most presses have enough leverage to do this. If you bell the base of the primer pocket outwards, you’ve essentially ruined your case, and there is no way a primer can seat correctly.

The fix is simple. Just make sure to adjust the decapping rod so that the base of the rod shaft does NOT bottom out on the inside of the case. The pin only needs to extend through the flash hole far enough to knock the primer out. The photo shows a Lyman Universal decapping die. But the same thing can happen with any die that has a decapping rod, such as bushing neck-sizing dies, and full-length sizing dies.

Universal decapping die

Whenever you use a die with a decapping pin for the first time, OR when you move the die to a different press, make sure to check the decapping rod length. And it’s a good idea, with full-length sizing dies, to always re-check the height setting when changing presses.

There are a variety of decapping dies currently on the market, with models available from Lee, Lyman, Hornady, RCBS, Redding, and Sinclair Int’l.

Lee Universal Decapping Die on SALE for $10.96
Speaking of decapping tools, Midsouth Shooters Supply sells the Lee Universal Decapping Die for just $10.96 (item 006-90292), a very good deal. There are many situations when you may want to remove primers from fired brass as a separate operation (prior to case sizing). For example, if your rifle brass is dirty, you may want to de-cap before sizing. Or, if you load on a progressive press, things will run much more smoothly if you decap you brass first, in a separate operation.

Lee universal decapping die

Decapping Dies for Cases with Smaller Flashholes

TAKE NOTE: Some Euro Small Flash Holes are spec’d at 1.5mm or 0.059″, and max out at about .062″, so these need a smaller die pin.

The low-cost Lee Universal Decapping Die will work with cartridges from 17 Fireball all the way up to big Magnums. However, NOTE that the decapping pin supplied with this Lee die is TOO LARGE for LAPUA 220 Russian, 6mmBR, 6.5×47, 6.5 Creedmoor, .308 Win (Palma) and Norma 6 PPC flash holes. Because the pin diameter is too large for these brass types, you must either turn down the pin, or decap with a different tool for cases with .059-.062″ flash-holes.

Sinclair Int’l offers a Stainless Decapping Die that comes with both .080 and .060 Pins. The $39.99 die ships with three decap pins for standard .080″ flash holes, and two pins for .060″ flash holes

Redding makes a Universal Decapping Die with an optional smaller-diameter decapping rod for the smaller .059-.062″ flash holes found on the BR and PPC cases. The use of this die is explained in the video below:

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July 23rd, 2021

Dry Lube Inside Case Necks for Smoother Bullet seating

Forster original caseneck case neck brass dry mica lube lubricator system

If you want smoother bullet seating, inside neck lube can help. Forum member Ackleyman II likes to add a little Mica powder inside his case necks before seating bullets. This is easily done with the Forster three-brush neck lube kit. Ackleyman tells us: “Many loads that I have will not shoot well with a dry neck compared to a neck that is cleaned and lubed with this [Forster Dry Lubricator] — the best $15 you have ever spent.”

The Forster Case Neck Lubricator features three brushes attached to a tough, impact-resistant case with holes for bench mounting. The brushes accommodate all calibers from 22 to 35 caliber. The kit includes enough “motor mica” to process 2000 to 3000 cases and has a cover to keep dust and grit from contaminating the mica. By moving the case neck up and down on the correct mica-covered brush, the neck can be cleaned and lubricated at the same time.

Function: Lubricate case necks for easier resizing
Contents: Kit with base, lid, and three nylon brushes
Lubricant: Includes 1/10 oz. of Motor Mica, enough to process 2000-3000 cases

Neck Lubrication After Ultrasonic Cleaning or Wet Tumbling with Pins
If you wet-tumble your cases with stainless media and solvents or ultrasonically clean your brass, you may find that the inside of the case necks get too “squeaky clean”. The inside surface of the neck looses lubricity. In this situation, applying a dry lube can definitely be beneficial. CLICK HERE to see story about ultrasonic cleaning.

Ultrasonic Brass Cleaning

ultrasonic brass cleaning neck lubricant moly dry lube

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July 22nd, 2021

SIG Sauer Sponsors First Hunter Games in Wyoming

SIG SAUER Cross Rifle ammunition hunter games gun digest true pierce

The popularity of PRS shooting has inspired a variety of new field-style marksmanship competitions, conducted in open country. These events combine hiking, rangefinding, and shooting from improvised positions. The newest outdoor rifle competition in North America is the Hunter Games, a tough 3-Day event sponsored by gun- and optics-maker SIG Sauer. Conducted June 13-16, 2021 on a private Wyoming ranch, the course covered a variety of terrain and elevation. There were flats, rivers, high ridges and Aspen groves. This was the opposite of a “lay down and shoot” rifle match.

SIG SAUER Cross Rifle ammunition hunter games gun digest true pierce

Competitors had to navigate tough terrain from stage to stage. During the course of the event, there were multiple creek crossings, and over 1000 feet of elevation on one stage. Contestants had only 30 minutes to traverse between stages.

SEE Full Story on GunsAmerica Digest »

SIG SAUER Cross Rifle ammunition hunter games gun digest true pierceTrue Pearce, Editor of GunsAmerica Digest and Hunt365, attended the Hunter Games, and shot many of the 22 challenging stages, filling in for an injured competitor. Pearce noted: “The stages were designed to be blind hunting scenarios where the contestants had only 15 minutes to find the targets, range them, figure out a shooting position… and make the shots.” The targets were steel plates shaped/sized to match a game animal’s vital zones. These plates were placed in front of a life-sized illustration of the animal, but only hits on the plates counted.

At the first-ever SIG SAUER Hunter Games, there were ten teams in total. Each team consisted of a professional hunter, two invited celebrities, and a Range Officer who kept score and enforced rules. The RO also carried an extra rifle, radio, and first aid kit.

This was quite different than a typical shooting match where the competitors sign up. All the “celebrity” competitors were invited by SIG Sauer, which provided SIG Cross Rifles, SIG optics, and SIG hunting ammunition. We like the idea of a hunting-focused match, with everyone shooting the same rifles and ammunition.

In a lengthy companion article, GunsAmerica publication Hunt365 covers the gear used at the Hunter Games. Click HERE for True Pearce’s review of the SIG Cross rifle, SIG Scopes, SIG Kil03000BDX LRF Binoculars, SIG ZULU6 Image Stabilized Binocs, and SIG Elite Series Ammo.

SIG SAUER Cross Rifle ammunition hunter games

Winning the first-ever SIG SAUER Hunter Games was Team Ramshorn: Trent Fisher, Scotty Lago, and Justin Rackley. In addition to the trophy, each team member won a SIG Legion Custom Works P320 AXG pistol.

SIG SAUER Cross Rifle ammunition hunter games gun digest true pierce

True Pearce observed that the challenges of this unique outdoor event, along with camping together in the wild, brought people together: “Complete strangers became lifelong friends — Most of the contestants had never met each other and were from very diverse walks of life. After ‘hunting’ together for two days, the comradery was really something to see and I have no doubt many lifelong friendships were created.”

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July 22nd, 2021

Important Second Amendment Case Before U.S. Supreme Court

Supreme court second amendment right carry law challenge case New York pistol associationU.S. Supreme Court building, photo by Joe Ravi CC-BY-SA 3.0.

A major Second Amendment case is now before the U.S. Supreme Court (SCOTUS). At issue are restrictive New York State gun control laws which make it virtually impossible to carry handguns in some New York cities. This case, officially New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen, could be the most important gun rights case in the last decade. With its decision, the Supreme Court could establish once and for all that there is an individual right to self-defense outside of the home.

Dave Workman, posting on Ammoland.com, explains: “The case, which was accepted for review by the high court in the upcoming term that begins in October, challenges New York’s restrictive requirement that anyone applying for a permit to carry a handgun outside the home must provide a ‘proper cause’ for wanting to carry a firearm for personal protection. This authority is all-too-often used to deny applicants their right to bear arms under the Second Amendment”. Along with the plaintiff New York State Rifle & Pistol Assn. (NYSRPA), the restrictive laws are being challenged by the Citizens Committee to Keep and Bear Arms (CCKRBA) and the Second Amendment Foundation (SAF).

“A right limited to someone’s home… is no right at all, and the court now has an opportunity to make that abundantly clear, settling an important constitutional issue once and for all.” — Alan Gottlieb, SAF

In addition to ruling on the restrictive NY laws, this case will give the High Court the opportunity to clarify Second Amendment legal precedents. It has been over a decade since the Supreme Court ruled that the Second Amendment protects an individual right to have a handgun in the home for self-defense in District of Columbia v. Heller. In 2010, the Court also ruled that the Second Amendment is a fundamental right that applies to the states in McDonald v. City of Chicago.

Case is Very Important for Second Amendment Rights
The NRA-ILA states: “It is hard to overstate how important this case is. The decision will affect the laws in many states that currently restrict carrying a firearm outside of the home. NRA-ILA is working hard to defend your constitutional rights and is prepared to argue this case in order to protect the rights of Americans everywhere.”

This could be the most important Second Amendment decision since D.C. v. Heller. The Supreme Court has not decided a major Second Amendment cast for over a decade. The make-up of the Court has changed, and this could result is a far-reaching decision that would impact multiple states.

Dave Workman explained: “It has been more than ten years since the Supreme Court hear a Second Amendment case. The court has declined to review several good gun rights cases, but that was before the SCOTUS majority shifted, with … three appointments by former President Donald Trump[.] If the court rules against New York, it will open the floodgates for similar challenges of laws in New Jersey, Maryland and … other states where citizens must provide a ‘good cause’ to exercise their constitutional rights.”

SAF Founder Alan Gottlieb stated that “so-called ‘proper cause’ requirements are routinely used to deny law-abiding citizens the ability to carrying firearms for personal protection outside their homes. Such laws are arbitrary in nature and they place an absurd level of authority in the hands of local officials and their subordinates to deny citizens their constitutional right to bear arms.”

New York NRA concealed carry supreme court case
The U.S. Supreme Court will hear NRA-backed case about New York state’s concealed carry laws.

Gottlieb added: “The Second Amendment should no longer be treated like the ugly stepchild of the Bill of Rights. Its language is clear, that the amendment protects not only the right of the individual citizen to keep arms, but to bear them, and that right extends beyond the confines of one’s home. A right limited to someone’s home is no right at all, and the court now has an opportunity to make that abundantly clear, settling an important constitutional issue once and for all.”

Two national gun rights organizations — the Second Amendment Foundation and the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms — have filed amicus briefs in support of the NYSRPA’s challenge to New York’s ultra-restrictive carry laws. You can read the text of the briefs below. For easier reading, ZOOM IN via the PLUS SYMBOL below each entry, or click the FULL PAGE icon (ARROW symbol at extreme right).

Amicus Briefs Filed by CCKRBA and SAF (Click + to Zoom)


CCRKBA SCOTUS Amicus Brief by Duncan


SAF SCOTUS Amicus Brief by Duncan

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July 22nd, 2021

The Colt Revolver That Won Five Olympic Gold Medals

A.P. Lane Pistol Wizard Colt Revolver Olympics

With the 2021 Tokyo Olympic Games kicking off tomorrow, July 23, 2021, we thought our readers might be interested in the “winningest” pistol ever used in the Olympic Games. There is currently no centerfire pistol shooting in the Olympics, but in the early part of the 20th century, centerfire pistol shooting was an Olympic sport. (Now Olympic pistol shooting is limited to Air Pistol and Rimfire Pistol.*) Today’s story showcases a Colt .38-Cal pistol that captured FIVE Gold Medals in the hands of shooter A.P. Lane.

A.P. Land and His .38-Cal Officer’s Model Colt

A.P. Lane was one of the greatest pistol shooters of his generation. He shot scores that were typically 25-50 points higher than those of his competitors. And he exhibited true Corinthian spirit. At the 1912 Olympics, Lane shared his match ammunition with another competitor who used that ammo to capture the Silver Medal (Lane won the Gold).

Click Photo to See Full-Size Image
A.P. Lane Pistol Wizard Colt Revolver Olympics

This revolver, factory-fitted with a skeletonized hammer, was used by American A.P. Lane in winning five Olympic Gold Medals in the 1912 and 1920 Olympic Games. It’s a .38 caliber, Colt Officer’s Model centerfire revolver from the early 20th century. Olympian A.P. Lane’s Gun can be found in Gallery 13, Firearm Traditions for Today, at the NRA National Firearms Museum in Fairfax, Virginia. The Museum exhibit includes a panoply of Lane pieces – his revolver, his five Gold Medals, and the five Olympic certificates that went along with them.

Watch Video History of the A.P. Lane Revolver

A.P. Lane Pistol Wizard Colt Revolver Olympics

A.P. Lane Pistol Wizard Colt Revolver Olympics

* There are air pistol and rimfire (.22 LR) pistol matches in Tokyo this year. Matches include 10M Women’s and 10M Mixed Team air pistol, and 25M Women’s Pistol and 25M Men’s Rapid-Fire Pistol.

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July 21st, 2021

Take Better Range and Gun Photos with Daylight Fill Flash

camera daylight fill flash shootingWe know you guys like taking photos of your rifles at the range. And, if you’re selling a rifle, scope, front rest, or rear bag, you need good photos to post in our Forum classifieds. Here’s a basic photography tip that can help you produce dramatically better photos. Use your camera’s ability to add “fill flash” even in daylight.

There’s plenty of light on a bright day. But bright light also means strong shadows. The shadows can leave parts of your subject literally in the dark. Daylight flash will help fill in those dark spots. In addition, if you are on a covered firing area, and want to include the range in your photo, you can benefit from using flash. This will prevent the foreground subject from being too dark while the downrange background is much too bright.

Photo without Flash

The photo above was taken without flash. As you can see, the rifle is too dark so details are lost. At the same time, the background (downrange) is over-exposed and washed out. The second photo below is taken with daylight flash. The difference is dramatic. Now you can see details of the rifle, while the background is exposed properly. Note how much easier it is to see the the targets downrange and the colors of the front rest. NOTE: these two photos were taken at the same time — just seconds apart.

Photo with Daylight “Fill-Flash”

Be sure to click on the larger versions of each photo.

How to Activate Daylight Flash
Most digital cameras have daylight flash capability. Some cameras have a separate setting for “auto fill flash”. On other cameras, you’ll have to set the camera to aperture priority and stop down the aperture to force the flash to fire. Read your camera’s manual. On many Canons, a menu that lets you set the “flash output”. For “fill flash” we like to set the flash at 30% to 50% output. This fills in the shadows sufficiently without “killing contrast” or creating too much reflection on shiny metal. Below is a photo taken with 30% flash output. Note the rich colors and how the exposure is balanced between foreground and background. Without flash the sky and target area would be “washed out”.


Here’s another tip for Canon owners. If you like deep, rich colors, use the “Vivid” setting in the effects menu. This punches up saturation and contrast.

Permalink Optics, Tech Tip Post comment »
July 21st, 2021

A Worthwhile Wildcat — the 6mm-223 for XTC Competition

6mm 223 sinclair

Intro: Ron Dague wanted a new gun that was similar to his trusty .223 Rem rifle, but which fired 6mm bullets. There is a superb choice of bullets in this caliber, and Ron found that the 95gr Berger VLD could be driven to a healthy 2604 FPS by the small .223 Rem case. This 6mm wildcat based on the common .223 Remington offers excellent accuracy and very low recoil — something very important in the cross-the-course discipline. In addition, Ron’s 95gr load with Alliant Reloder 15 delivered an ES of just 4 fps over ten shots. That exceptionally low ES helps achieve minimal vertical dispersion at 600 yards.

6mm 223 Across the course McMilland stock Ron Dague Sinclair InternationalBy Ron Dague, Sinclair Reloading Tech
From Sinclair’s GunTech Articles Archive

I have watched a change in thinking for NRA High Power across the course in match rifles and calibers. There are several [popular chamberings]: 6mm AR, 6.5 Grendel, 6XC, and 6.5 Creedmoor. I have seen these rifles perform and all have done very well.

When I started this project I was looking for a cartridge that shoots and feeds well from a magazine[.] I had shot the .223 Rem in my 722 Remington and knew it had fed well so I chose the .223 Remington necked up to 6mm.

The 6mm-223 gives me what I have in the standard .223 only with a better selection of bullets. I wanted a better 600-yard bullet with a higher BC than provided by the 80 and 82 grain bullets. I also wanted a 600-yard line bullet with a .500 or better B.C. for those shots that should be 10 ring or better but seem to find the 9 ring no matter how well I held and broke the shot.

6mm 223 sinclairPutting the 6mm-233 Project Together
My project started with ordering a 6mm barrel from Bartlein with a 1-8″ twist. I called Pacific Tool and ordered the 6mm-223 reamer. I found a used Remington 700 action at a local gun shop and already had a Remington 40X stock. I then started putting the gun together.

I already had a .223 Remington match rifle, and I wanted the 6mm-223 to be as close to the same as I could make it. I installed the barreled action in a wood 40X stock to work up load data and work out any magazine feeding issues. While I was working on that, I looked for a McMillan Baker Special stock and finally found one to finish this project. I bedded the action and stock, then took the rifle to the range to check zeros on the sights and scope. I was surprised that I didn’t have to change anything on the sights. I thought changing the stock would cause sight changes. The thought went through my head, “Maybe the 40X stock isn’t all that bad”.

Here’s line-up of 6mm bullets. The Berger 95gr VLD is in the middle.
berger 6mm bullet hornady sierra line up 6mm 233

I took the new rifle to the first match of the year, a National Match Course match, and my off-hand score was 83, rapid sitting 95, rapid prone 95, and slow fire prone 197 — for total aggregate 470. This may not be my best work, but on match day the wind was blowing about 15 mph and the temp was around 40° F, with rain threatening. This was a reduced course of fire — we shot at 200 and 300 yards on reduced targets.

I used 70gr Berger bullets for this match, loaded in Remington brass with 25 grains of VihtaVuori N540 and Federal 205M primers. When I worked up loads for this rifle, N540 gave the best accuracy with the best extreme spread — 2,950 fps with an extreme spread of 20 fps on a 10-shot string. The load for 600 yards was with a 95gr Berger VLD bullet, with 23.0 grains of Reloder 15, Lapua cases, and the same Federal 205M primers. This load is 2,604 fps, with an extreme spread of 4 fps over a 10-shot string. I’ve shot this load at several 3×600 yard matches, and the accuracy has proven to be very good. At the last 3×600 match, my scores were as follows: 199-10x and 198-11X with scope, and 193-10X with iron sights. Best 600-yard score so far with iron sights was 198-12X.

6mm-223 Rem Rifle Specifications: 700 BDL action and floor plate, Bartlein 6mm 1:8″ twist, McMillan Baker Special stock in Desert Camo, Centra front and rear sights, Ken Farrell bases with stripper clip guide, Sinclair hand stop, and Jewell trigger. Gunsmith Neil Keller helped me with the metal work and instructed me on the action work and rebarreling.

Permalink Bullets, Brass, Ammo, Competition, Reloading 3 Comments »